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Fisrt part of Agbogbloshie e-waste project inaugurated

Three facilities have been constructed at the Agbogbloshie Scrap hub in Accra as part of efforts to create a secure environment for merchants therein and alongside tackle e-waste challenges.

They comprise a technical training centre to equip scrap dealers with environmentally e-waste recycling methods; a hospital to cater for their health needs; and a football pitch for entertainment.

Started two years ago, the amenities constitute the first component of a 25million Euro e-waste project funded by the German government through the German Development Cooperation (GIZ).

The e-waste project, amongst other things, aims to create a sustainable e-waste management system and implement capacity building measures for various players, including the informal sector small scale recyclers.

At the inauguration of the facilities on Wednesday, the German Ambassador to Ghana, Mr Christoph Retzlaff recalled the “difficult” condition scrap dealers worked, in two years ago adding that  the project would bring relief  to them.

He said the project was one of the important cooperation projects under the Ghana-German relations, averring that country cooperation should be about impacting the lives of people.

He envisaged that the project would be made a model case for e-waste recycling in Ghana and called for continuous collaboration from all stakeholders to help achieve the intended objective.

Professor Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation thanked the German government for the facilities, saying it would make work in the scrap hub easier and healthier.

He said government would continue to facilitate projects of similar nature for scrap dealers, because they were important to government.

Mr Markus Spitzbart, head of the e-waste project at GIZ, reminded the traders of their commitment to adhere to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards in their work and pledged GIZ’s obligation to transform the hub.

Dr Stefan Oswald, Director General for Africa of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development averred that it was paramount for people to work in safe surroundings for which reason his country would continue to support measures to change the state of affairs.

He told Ghanaian Times in an interview later that the second component of the e-waste project would involve the linking of scrap dealers to recycling companies.

The Chief Executive of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly, Mohammed Adjei Sowah urged scrap dealer to cooperate with the assembly in its efforts to amass all dealers in the capital, at the hub.

This, he said, was to help effectively manage the health risk associated with their work.

BY JONATHAN DONKOR

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